Statement by Hanaa Singer, UNICEF Representative for Syria on attack on the Al Hayat Primary School in Eastern Damascus
UNICEF, November 7, 2014
DAMASCUS, Syria, 7 November 2014 – The attack on the Al Hayat Primary School in the district of Qaboun in eastern Damascus on Wednesday killed 11 children and injured many more – yet another horrific reminder of the terrible price Syria’s children are paying in a brutal conflict now well into its fourth year.
The Qaboun assault is the latest in a series of indiscriminate attacks on schools, teachers and students. In the first nine months of 2014 alone, the United Nations in Syria has verified at least 35 such incidents that killed 105 children and injured 293. The real numbers are surely higher, and there are indications that attacks in some areas may have been deliberate.
UNICEF has repeatedly called upon all parties to the conflict to uphold their responsibility to protect children, schools, and other civilian infrastructure from the conflict. Schools should be zones of peace and safe havens where children can learn without fear of death or injury. All parties to the conflict have specific obligations under International Humanitarian and Human Rights Laws to afford children special protection.